A series of bomb attacks killed at least 63 people in Baghdad. The attack is the first major act of violence in Iraq since the U.S. troop withdrawal last Sunday and offered the first sign of a violent backlash against Shi’ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki’s efforts to arrest Iraq’s Sunni vice president, Tariq al-Hashimi. Police report the bombings targeted Shi’ite districts in Baghdad.
The White House Press Secretary released the following statement:
We strongly condemn the terrorist attacks against innocent Iraqis, which serve no agenda other than murder and hatred. We offer our condolences to those whose loved ones were lost or wounded. Attempts such as this to derail Iraq’s continued progress will fail. Iraq has suffered heinous attacks like this in the past, and its security forces have shown they are up to the task of responding and maintaining stability. Time and again, the Iraqi people have shown their resilience in overcoming efforts to divide them. We continue to urge leaders to come together to face common challenges.